in-person strings intensive (IPSI)

High level chamber program for students


Procedures & tests to keep you safe


Daily coachings with the Rolston Quartet


Home-cooked meals


Faculty concert with the Rolston Quartet


Dedicated chamber group


Final performance & other opportunities


Gathering with like-minded musicians

Start your summer well and grow your musicianship.

Originally planned for January 2022, IPSI was postponed due to the COVID Omicron crisis.

After more months of no chamber music, the joy of coming back together to play some of the best music that exists is indescribable. Playing for audiences is a whole new experience and one that makes us even more grateful to be in-person.

So what better way to start your summer than to attend a chamber festival?

The Rolston Quartet is one of the best quartets out there and will transform your chamber music abilities, plus they’ll be giving a full performance.

Want to work more closely with them? Fellowship program information in the FAQ section.

Join us for an incredible week of chamber music.

You’ll learn directly under the incredible Rolston Quartet, 2016 First Prizewinners of the Banff Competition and 2018 Cleveland Quartet Award Recipients. Not only will they coach your group daily, but they’ll also be giving a concert for all of us to enjoy!

Come meet other high-level musicians from around the country, play some fulfilling chamber music, and of course, enjoy lots of sightreading and many late nights.

Be filled with great music, new friends, and a close community. Don’t let this summer be uninspiring!

Applications open October 15, 2021, and close November 15, 2021. Photo credits to Shane Gray.


COVID-safe Policies

Safety is our #1 priority and COVID protocols will include testing, temperture checks, and more.

More Info

Scroll down for full policies that include rigorous testing, contant checks, full quarantine, and other safety precautions. Any other questions or further concerns can be directed to Alyssa via email.

Incredible Faculty

Learn under the award-winning Rolston Quartet, Banff and Astral Artists Competition Winners.

More Info

With their debut album Souvenirs, an all-Tchaikovsky release that was named Recording of the Year by BBC Music Magazine, the Rolston String Quartet continues to receive acclaim and recognition for their musical excellence. The quartet was awarded First Prize at the 12th Banff International String Quartet Competition, and was the recipient in 2018 of Chamber Music America’s prestigious Cleveland Quartet Award. Other accolades include prizes in Astral Artists’ National Auditions and the Chamber Music Yellow Springs Competition.

The Rolston String Quartet has performed at numerous important venues including Carnegie Hall, London’s Wigmore Hall, the Freer Gallery in Washington, DC, and UCLA’s Herb Alpert School of Music; at chamber music societies in Calgary, Vancouver, Houston, Detroit, Phoenix, and Philadelphia; and in such European cities as Paris, Leipzig, Berlin, Lucerne, Heidelberg, Barcelona, and Graz. Notable artistic collaborators have included David Shifrin, Janina Fialkowska, Gary Hoffman, Nobuko Imai, Miguel da Silva, and the St. Lawrence and Dover string quartets. The quartet’s 2021-22 schedule includes concerts at Music Mountain (CT), Bay Chamber Concerts and the Collins Center for the Arts (ME), Chamber Music Raleigh (NC), Palm Beach State College (FL), Music at Kohl Mansion (CA), and the Doudna Fine Arts Center at Eastern Illinois University.

The quartet is an associated artist at the Queen Elisabeth Music Chapel in Waterloo, Belgium, and previously served as the Fellowship Quartet in Residence at the Yale School of Music. Previously, they were the graduate quartet-in-residence at Rice University’s Shepherd School of Music. They have also taught at the University of Toronto and the Bowdoin (ME) International Music Festival.

Their primary mentors include the Brentano Quartet, James Dunham, Norman Fischer, and Kenneth Goldsmith, and they have received additional guidance from the St. Lawrence String Quartet, Barry Shiffman, Miguel da Silva, and Alastair Tait.

The Rolston String Quartet was formed in the summer of 2013 at the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity’s Chamber Music Residency. They take their name from Canadian violinist Thomas Rolston, founder and longtime director of the Music and Sound Programs at the Banff Centre.

Luri Lee plays a Carlo Tononi violin, generously on loan from Shauna Rolston Shaw. The Rolston String Quartet is endorsed by Jagar Strings of Denmark.

The Rolston String Quartet is represented in the United States by New York-based Sciolino Artist Management.

Fantastic Chamber Music

Play some of the best chamber repertoire with other incredible musicians.

More Info

You will be assigned to one string quartet, quintet or sextet (pre-formed groups are welcome to apply as individuals and note that you are part of a pre-formed group). Based on your past experience and requests, repertoire will be distributed.

Over the week, you will prepare one full work with daily coachings. A final performance will occur at the end of the week.

The details

We are accepting a maximum of 24 students (12 violins, 6 violas, 6 cellos). Students will be placed in quartets and pre-assigned repertoire based on their requests and past experience. Students may also request chamber partners, especially if your group is preformed (each member must submit an application separately). This program is intended for students ages 15-26; please contact Alyssa if you are outside the age range and would like an exemption.

Each group will prepare one full work and perform it during the festival. Our fabulous faculty, the Rolston Quartet, will give at least one hour-long coaching per day, as well as a full performance for the donors, sponsors, outside audience members and participants of IPSI.

Participants will reside in one large house (separate quarters for males & females), where everyone will quarantine together. Students will help prepare and serve home-cooked meals as part of their Intensive duties. Evenings are free for rehearsals, socializing, and sight reading.

COVID-19 Policies


Required negative COVID test prior to travel


Vaccination strongly encouraged


Airport pickup/dropoff - no stops to ensure no contamination


No outside contact, full quarantine for duration of the program


Daily sanitization of all surfaces and furniture


Food prepared on-site with food safety protocol

Contact Alyssa with specific concerns.

Daily Schedule



8am, breakfast provided


Morning Rehearsal

9:30am-11:30 (if on lunch duty) or 12:30pm, groups may choose to rehearse later instead



12:30pm, hot lunch 


Afternoon Coachings and/or Personal Practice

1:30-4:30pm, coaching slots vary by group



6pm, groups on dinner duty will start at 4:30


Free Time/Sight Reading/Other Activities

After dinner free time (you can even practice, if you want to!)

Frequently Asked Questions

How long is the program?

IPSI will be 9 days long, with 7 days for rehearsal. Arrival will be Saturday afternoon, May 21, and departure will be Sunday morning, May 29. Flight information for airport pickup/dropoff will be requested after acceptance.

You will be assigned easy kitchen duties (prep & cleanup) with your chamber group twice during the festival. We’ll have fun making food together as a bonding experience!

Parking on-site is available for free and driving is encouraged to minimize exposure.

What is the tuition cost?

Total tuition is $1197 for 9 days and includes 3 meals per day (1 meal for arrival & departure days) as well as airport pickup/dropoff. You are responsible for bringing your own music, a music stand, your instrument, and anything else you might need.

Is there scholarship available?

At the moment, there is limited scholarship available. We are working on grants and donors and if scholarship becomes available, you will be notified with or after your acceptance.

You may indicate on your application your need; a written letter is encouraged along with your required tax return.

What are the age/level requirements?

We are accepting students from 15-26 years old. If you are younger or older, please email Alyssa for an exemption.

Level of playing should be very high; the admissions process will be selective. Many of our past applicants come from well-known and rigorous university and conservatory environments.

Where is IPSI located?

Our campus is located in Dallas, TX. You will fly into Dallas Love Field (DAL) or Dallas-Fort Worth (DFW).

You may be required to share a large bed with another participant because of space constraints. You may indicate on your application if you need other accommodations.

How will travel work?

You are responsible for travel. Included in your tuition cost is airport pickup/dropoff, and once accepted, we will ask for your itinerary to coordinate. Please book your travel for…

Arrival: Saturday past 2pm, May 21

Departure: Sunday before 12pm, May 29

Flying in & out of Dallas Love Field (DAL) is preferred but Dallas Fort Worth Airport (DFW) is also acceptable.

Any other travel times must be approved by administration.

Driving by car is encouraged; free parking is available.

Can I pick my group members?

If you and a friend choose to apply, you may request to be in a chamber group together. However, final personnel decisions will be left to administration and there is no guarantee.

Preformed groups will be placed together. Repertoire will be chosen based on your application preferences, so preformed groups should agree on repertoire choices.

What are the application requirements?

You will need to submit two videos of up to 15 minutes total. We prefer solo material, however, if you are in a pre-formed group, one member should submit a quartet recording. Every member must submit a separate application with at least one solo recording.

Recordings should not be more than one year old and should contain standard repertoire, such as a movement of Bach and a movement of a concerto. No formal repertoire is required.

Is there an application fee?

Yes. The application fee for IPSI is $40.

Will you have a wait list?

Yes, we will hold a small wait list, in the chance someone withdraws or becomes sick.

You will be asked to accept or deny your spot on the wait list in order to facilitate a strong list.

When are decisions released?

Applications for IPSI close March 15, and you will hear back by March 25.

What happens if I get accepted?

Once accepted, you will have one week to accept or decline. If you choose to accept, we encourage you to purchase your airline ticket or arrange travel as soon as possible. You will be required to pay half the amount of tuition as a deposit when you accept. The second half of tuition is due two weeks prior to the start of the Intensive.

You will have until two weeks prior to the start of the Intensive to withdraw. If you choose to withdraw for any reason, you will not receive your tuition deposit back, and will be asked to find a replacement.

For other backup plans such as Intensive cancellation, see question below.

What are the backup plans?

If you have committed to IPSI but decide you cannot or will not travel, you will be eligible for a half refund, provided you notify administration at least two weeks prior to the start of the program and you are able to find a suitable replacement. We will keep a wait list to assist in finding a replacement. Any cancellations less than two weeks before December 26 will result in no refunds being given.

The Rolston String Quartet has committed to coaching in-person.

If an outbreak of COVID-19 occurs during the festival, the rest of the festival will be cancelled and negative-testing students will be released from the festival. Infected students will be responsible for quarantining themselves and testing negative for COVID prior to returning home.

What happens if someone contracts COVID?

While on campus, after rigorous testing, there is a very low chance of infection. Should this occur, the person(s) with COVID will be quarantined at the ranch in a secluded room. Everyone else will be re-tested and activities will be re-evaluated. If everyone else continues to test negative, we will proceed with caution, masks, and lots of Lysol wipes.

If a participant tests positive upon arrival, we will re-test to ensure it isn’t a false positive. Student will be quarantined in a room (or hotel, depending on preference) and have food delivered. Student is responsible for their own accommodations after the end of the program.

Start your application Today. space is limited.

Applications open October 15 and close November 15. Decisions released November 25.


Click the left button to contact Alyssa with questions.

email alyssaopen application

Contact Alyssa

Still have questions?

especially with coronavirus, we want you to be certain about your safety and the safety of those around you. Otherwise, looking forward to seeing your application!

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